Cohabitation Strategies co-founders met to commemorate the 10th anniversary of their practice in Paris this summer. During the first weeks of August a number of close discussions and working sessions mostly focused on the development of their current project, a book, took place in the city once inhabited and debated by some of the main inspirations of their practice such as the Dadaists, the Surrealists, the Situationist International and Henri Lefebvre. While Parisians commemorated in cafes, streets and museums the 50th anniversary of the events of May-June 1968 still enraged by the fact that nothing has changed since then but deteriorated even more, Cohabitation Strategies members reflected on the origins of their practice which emerged pretty much driven by what prompted those mobilizations: capitalist expansion in cities transgressing every aspect of social life.
September 2008 was a significant month not only for Cohabitation Strategies but also for every person across the world. Concerned by the urban state of affairs of the time (commodification of housing, financialization of cities, state-led gentrification, etc) and appalled by the architectural, urban and artistic practices increasingly feeding capitalist desires, Cohabitation Strategies was born a week before the collapse of the investment bank Lehman Brothers which straight away unleashed what economists have considered the worst financial crisis since Great Depression of the 1930s. Today, after ten years of work within the urban spaces produced by neoliberal urbanization and the failure of it, Cohabitation Strategies is working on a publication that aims to expose the collaborations, processes and challenges involved in seven long-term projects developed since the inception of their practice: Urban Union Tarwewijk (Rotterdam, The Netherlands), The Bordeaux Report (Bordeaux, France), Urban Campaign (Lecce, Italy), The Guelph/Wellington Rural-Urban Program (Guelph, Canada), Housing Cooperative Trusts (New York City, US), Playgrounds for Useful Knowledge (Philadelphia, US), and R for Republic (Milan, Italy).